Sunday, August 24, 2014

A Quick Trip to the Big City

We flew up to New York on Wednesday morning.  My husband's company had a reception and dinner for all employees whose 25th anniversary of service was this year.  It was very nice.

The next morning there was a lovely breakfast buffet.  Did I mention that all of these events took place in the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel?

We opted to stay an additional day.  After breakfast we took a cab to lower Manhattan to visit the World Trade Center and 9/11 Memorial.  On the way, we passed the apartment complex where I lived until I was three or four years old.  Stuyvesant Town was built for GI's returning from WWII to have an affordable place to live with their families.  It looks a little grim from the road, but has parks, fountains, and now some trees.  I had not seen Stuy Town in sixty years!

It was a beautiful day to see the new World Trade Center.  It is not yet occupied, but they were preparing  pavers and sidewalks outside.  It looks like it is just days away from being finished.  At a symbolic 1776 feet tall, it is the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere.

At its base is the National September 11 Memorial and Museum.  There is a pool/fountain with the names of all the victims of the terrorist attacks engraved into the top of the wall.

From the memorial, we walked over to the September 11 museum and waited in line just like at Disney World.  Security to get in was just like going through airport security.  It was a very moving and emotional experience to see the exhibits, many of which were multimedia presentations.

Of interest to quilters were two of the quilts made in remembrance of that day which hang in the museum.

I also loved this colorful mural made with children's artwork and messages written on hearts.

Be prepared to re-experience the horror of that day when you visit the memorial.  There is also an effort to remember each of the victims with a photo and a statement about their lives.

After that we had some pizza at an Italian restaurant nearby, and then took a long cab ride up to the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  I have been to the MOMA, but don't recall ever going in the MMA.  I was craving some loveliness after that experience in the 9/11 museum.

We went straight to the Impressionist wing and enjoyed room after room of Monets, Renoirs, and other great artists.  But my favorite of all was this Van Gogh, titled Wheat Field with Cypresses.  There is so much energy in the painting, and the colors glow next to all the muted paintings in the same room.

That night we went out to a French restaurant within a few blocks of the Waldorf.  

Le Relais de Venise has a fixed menu of salad, steak, and "Pommes Frites" or French fries.  But the best was the dessert.  Pictured here are my profiteroles.  Sinful ecstasy!

Look at the nice night light that helped us on our walk home to the hotel!  It is my favorite art deco example in New York, the Chrysler Building.

We had a wonderful time with mild temperatures and clear skies on our visit.  But I am always glad to get home to beautiful, green North Carolina after a trip to the concrete, glass and steel buildings of New York.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Whacky Ladies Show and Tell

It's been a couple of weeks, but I have some pictures to share of the August meeting of the Whacky Ladies Quilt Bee.

Donna made some memory quilts for a customer using a family member's shirts.

And a T-shirt quilt for a middle school principal.

Mary used her favorite pattern to make this Nine-Patch Pizazz quilt featuring bird fabric.

 That's also Mary hiding behind this Strips and Curves quilt that she made at a quilting workshop in Tennessee.

Lori showed off her finished shawl.

 And she also had a couple of spectacular quilts made from Bonnie Hunter mystery patterns.

 Our hostess, Carolyn, showed off her finished wool appliqué table mat.

 And here is a cheerful baby quilt made by Marilyn.  She used the same fabrics as the one she made for the baby's nursery...but this one stays at "Nana's" house.

Fran also had a baby quilt in bright colors, not yet quilted.

We spent the past five days at our mountain cabin.  My brother Jeff and his family from Florida came up to escape the heat. 

We had a family reunion on Thursday with three of my five brothers and my sister all present!

We also have something new on our deck...which I know we will enjoy for years to come!  Two of our little great nieces were among the first to take the plunge (with Mama watching carefully!)

It was a great LONG weekend.  Now we are home for two days, and then off to New York!  Life is good!

Friday, August 8, 2014

The Traveling Day Lilies

It took me a long time to finish my art quilt, now titled The Traveling Day Lilies.

It is raw-edge appliqué stitched down with embroidery floss.  I quilted it with Superior metallic thread in green and a Valdani cotton in gold.  I added some miscellaneous beads to the stamens of the flowers.

Here is another detail shot.

I have entered this in the next PAQA-South quilt show to be held at the Page-Walker Arts and History Center in Cary this fall.

We have been traveling a lot.  Besides our mountain cabin, we have also been to Asheville for a weekend with family and friends.  Ten of us attended a concert at the Pisgah Brewing Company with Trampled By Turtles.  Funny name for a group of remarkable musicians who can pick QUICK!

Here is a new picture of my little grand baby, Charlie.  She is a joy.  I still babysit for her twice a week and also kept her last weekend.

This past week I have been to the National Teapot exhibit in Creedmoor, NC, and also to my old quilt bee, The Whacky Ladies.  More to come in future posts!